On June 20, 2008, Charles N. Kriss, a former New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services engineer, pled guilty to conspire to commit bribery in connection with a repair project to reconstruct Pier 86 where the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum is located. Mr. Kriss agreed to serve a sentence and pay a fine (yet to be determined) and cooperate with the ongoing investigation.
The U.S. District Court in Islip, NY indicted Mr. Kriss on June 5, 2008 for accepting bribes from a co-conspirator company supplying New York City with plastic marine pilings for the project. Plastic marine pilings, resembling telephone poles, are reinforced synthetic pilings used as substitutes for traditional timber pilings in port and pier construction projects and other marine applications.
The conspiracy took place between 1999 and 2003. In May 2007, Robert Taylor, a former employee of a Virginia based marine products firm, pled guilty to multiple felonies, including a charge of conspiring to bribe Mr. Kriss. Mr. Taylor’s company charged an extra 10 percent to purchase orders worth approximately $400,000 and used this money to pay Mr. Kriss. In January 2008, a court sentenced Mr. Taylor to serve two years in prison and a pay a fine of $300,000. Mr. Kriss could face up to five years imprisonment and a fine up to $250,000.
The ongoing investigation is being conducted by the Antitrust Division’s National Criminal Enforcement Section and the Department of Defense’s Defense Criminal Investigative Service, with the assistance of the Office of the Inspector General of the New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services.